As if Boston Celtics fans need another reason to hate Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant, his latest signature shoe has a gag-inducing design. Nike unveiled the Kobe Elite 9 shoes on Wednesday, which feature nine red stripes on the ankle meant to mimic the sutures from surgery to repair Bryant’s Achilles tendon.
Social media reaction was decidedly mixed, ranging from diehard love to confusion and disgust. Bryant, who is close to returning to the court after tearing the Achilles in April, is using the typical line about overcoming adversity, of course.
“It’s a symbol of the story we’re trying to tell,” he told ESPN.com. “It’s a constant reminder of where I came from.”
So how much does it cost for fans to literally match Kobe on his journey back to the court, wound-for-bloody-wound? $225.
Back of Kobe 9 Elite has sutures that match his Achilles surgery pic.twitter.com/iNotPy3NJW
— darren rovell (@darrenrovell) December 4, 2013
30th century orthopedic shoes RT @SKTV_: The Kobe "Audi" http://t.co/RKoJnPxgEM
— Nucky Thompson (@GrandThefts_CJ) December 5, 2013